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iBreatheMusic.com -- The Pulse
Issue #5 -- 30 November 2002
In this issue

@ Introduction
@ What's New on IBreathe
@ Pulse Bites: Pat Martino Quote
@ Eric's Shred 101-Lick
@ Member Spotlight: Bongo Boy
@ Sizzling Hot Topics


Hello all, and welcome to issue #5 of 'The Pulse'.

So, it's Christmas time again. For most people this means vacation and
a peaceful few days. Not so for musicians! For us this is the busiest
time of the year. Work pops up everywhere, ranging from Top 40 gigs at
annual company dinners (don't go there without that Wham! song) to a
humble interpretation of 'Silent Night' for the entire family (can
work be any harder?).

This said, now is the perfect time to brush up on our Christmas
repertoire. Here are 2 links to get you started:


New Articles on iBreatheMusic

by Jamie Andreas

It's interesting to think of the ways people speak about time, and
their relationship to it. Certainly, the subject of time has been the
study of not only scientists in recent times, but even more so by
mystics, sages, and saints throughout the ages.


by Eric Vandenberg

OK, after I got some positive feedback regarding my "You Didnt
Try..." article, here is yet another one dealing with stuff other than
scales, licks etc... attitude, which is equally important!


by Darrin Koltow

Instead of sitting down with a bunch of boring theory textbooks, how
would you like to make *music* as you learn how harmony and chords
work on the guitar?


by James B Schultz

This article was requested after several posts I made on the topic
"Difficult Picking Exercises". Working on the things you find
difficult is where you are going to achieve the most gain.


by Eric Vandenberg

Greg Howe is one of my main influences and, to me and many others, one
of the most innovative and technically-able guitarists these days.
Heres my tribute to him... including a bio, discography and LOTS of
licks !!!


Pulse Bites: Pat Martino Quote

Recently, I had a clean-out of music books and methods I own. It's
quite amazing how many of them someone accumulates throughout the
years. Anyway, as I was trying to organize things logically I ran
across a book by Pat Martino entitled 'Linear Expressions'. I
completely forgot about that one and had a browse through, well, I got
as far as to Pat's foreword. Here is an excerpt, which gave me some
food for thought:

Art has many social problems. One of the greatest is that all
successful artists have become successful through being publicly
confined to the fields in which they are most marketable. Therefore
most of their music is heard on a media oriented basis. With regard to
the artists private expressions its extremely possible that what
truly moves that artist will also move the public. But unfortunately,
the industry of recorded music in most cases keeps that artist and the
public in a rigid tow. Its through this that success has nothing to
do with expression unless of course, we as artists no longer seek that
success from the industry itself  but gain it through privately
sharing with the public itself, because if the true artist chooses to
do this rather than the other, in many cases the industry itself shall
now come to seek the artist because through sharing with all, the
artist shall now care less about seeking the industry and will no
longer have to wait his or her life trying to reach or retain success.
Its now the true art that shall emerge for both the public and


Eric's Shred 101-Lick

EV: I asked my buddy Thorsten (check out 'Shred Talk' at
http://www.ibreathemusic.com/play/article/54 to learn more about him)
to provide some cool shred-licks for the Pulse, and heres the first
one he submitted. 
Thorsten: Here is a 'bluesy pentatonic lick in Em', which can easily
be integrated into your soloing and improvisation. Its not that tough
to play it, the only difficult part are the wide stretches involved
(instant tendonitis).
Most of the notes are pull-offs, only the first and last note of each
grouping are picked. Of course you can play this in all different
keys. But once you go down further than the 8th fret, the stretches
will most likely be too wide. Play this one as fast as possible!
EV: Thanks, Thorsten!

   S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S

   S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S  S    Q   H.

Member Spotlight: Bongo Boy

Member Name: Bongo Boy
Real Name: Kirk Fleming
Location: Colorado USA
Instrument: Jazz guitar, conga

How and when did you get started with music?
It really began before I can remember--mother played at our little
upright piano nearly every evening as I went off to bed. Brahams,
Beethoven, Chopin. Both parents loved waltzes and loved to dance. My
dad loved polka, and occasionally would take his violin down a play a
lively number. But what instilled my deepest love for music was
listening to their albums when family came over, and at the holidays.
Mostly classical--I hated the popular stuff. I still remember
Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto as the first piece of music that truly
moved me. It's still probably the single most gut-wrenching piece of
music I know.

From 3rd grade thru high school band I played cornet...but I connected
more with my soprano recorder and harmonica, which I played through my
hippy period. Much more conducive to sitting lotus-style in the woods
of Michigan, reflective and deep.

How did you come across iBreatheMusic.com?
I can't remember. I was likely doing an interplanetary search for
'guitar' at the time. But, I could immediately tell the site was
unique..something about the overall style or approach--maybe the
general timbre of the conversations. There are sites with far larger
members, but as other folks have notices, often those sites are
plagued with dialog I would call degenerative. At iBreathe, it's not
all 'strictly business' and members have fun, but conduct is
respectful--that's important to me.

What styles of music do you play?
None, really. When I'm actually trying to play a song, it's a jazz
standard. When I'm just goofing off, it'll be pieces of familiar 60s
or 70s rock--Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Beatles, Stones. That's the
stuff I grew up on, until I found music I felt was more energizing and
fun. It will be a long, long time before I find a style to call
'home', if I ever do. In the mean time, the plan is to center around a
traditional jazz style. 

Who are your biggest influences?
Usually this question means 'biggest influences on your playing', so
in that sense, I have no answer--I can't play. But my biggest
inspirations currently include Earl Klugh, Joe Pass, and Wes
Montgomery. This is based not on careful study of their styles, but on
a relatively few recordings. Inspiring also is the musician who
overcomes serious challenges..or the person who subordinates
musicianship for family, for example. That has to be the ultimate
test. Wes, I think, stands out for me in this regard. Right now I'm
also looking at Louis Armstrong--there's something going on there
that, while I don't understand it technically, puts a big smile on my
I've recently been listening to a range of music with origins in Ivory
Coast, Senegal and West Africa. Ricardo Lemvo specifically--there's a
huge draw there for me, and this sound will have to be integrated some
way in whatever I may create in the distant future. Many Afro-Cuban
sounds (the Afro-Cuban All Stars as an example of the genre) drive me
crazy, too. Latin rhythms are without a doubt going to drive what I
do--but I didn't grow up immersed in syncopated, polyrhythmic sound,
so my brain is struggling a bit to develop a feel for what's going on

What formal training have you had?
None other than high school band.

What were some of the biggest breakthroughs you had in your learning
of music theory?
Although I'm just beginning, breakthrough No. 1 was discovering how
orderly it all is, compared to what I expected. That has helped me at
least memorize a lot of information, and I find that helpful. When the
dialog gets deep at iBreathe, I often cut-and-paste threads into a
local document, then go over it in detail, relating what's being said
to what I think I've learned. Usually, this reinforces what I've
learned about intervals, scales and chords. When it doesn't, it often
means I learn something new or tweak my perspective on what I thought
I knew.
At the current point in my progress, I haven't integrated much of what
I've learned on paper to actual playing. This will happen soon because
that's my entire focus right now--trying different approaches to make
that happen. This will be the next, and I expect far most important,

What practice technique you use do you feel has paid off the most
handsomely in its effect on the way you play?
A few of the techniques from Jamey's Correct Practice ideas. The
overarching idea is that of muscle memory--a foundational idea that is
applied almost everywhere the human body interacts with its
environment. Slow practice, resisting the urge to move faster than
you're prepared for, and repetition. It's hard for to say it has
improved the way I play--it's true of course--but I prefer to think
that it's what has allowed me to play at all!

What gear do you use? I mostly play my Ibanez AF200, which is a
medium-deep hollow body electric. I plug it through a Fender tuner
into a little Behringer mixer, then into a 75W stereo power amp. I use
two little tiny studio monitor speakers--reverb is provided by the 3m
x 4m room I play in. I'd like to test using a Presonus preamp, as well
as one of the bigger Ampeg bass amps (the one with the 3-tube preamp
in it), but this would be for fun only, not because I need any gear.
You know how it is.

What gear do you use?
I mostly play my Ibanez AF200, which is a medium-deep hollow body
electric. I plug it through a Fender tuner into a little Behringer
mixer, then into a 75W stereo power amp. I use two little tiny studio
monitor speakers--reverb is provided by the 3m x 4m room I play in.
I'd like to test using a Presonus preamp, as well as one of the bigger
Ampeg bass amps (the one with the 3-tube preamp in it), but this would
be for fun only, not because I need any gear. You know how it is.

What are you up to at the moment?
I'm playing with several things. I'm still trying to find chords that
work with Autumn Leaves--that sound good to me, that seem to work with
the melody and the register I'm playing in, and that I can actually
articulate on the fretboard. This is my biggest challenge and
frustration right now. I starting to work with one or two other
standards where all these decisions have been made for me, and I'm
excited to get practicing today on that. After reading a little bit on
the topic at iBreathe and elsewhere, I'm starting to get familiar with
pentatonics in a few places on the fretboard.
Guni recommended a book to me, The New Harmony Book, and I've just
finished my first read. I'll be going through parts of it a second
time--especially where I took notes. I'll do a short review and post
it at iBreathe because I think this is a book that could help out a
lot of folks. Since my review will be from a beginner's perspective, I
thought it would be something other newbies could relate to.

Do you have any interests (apart from iBreathe of course!)?
It is amazing how many major US companies still can't use the data
they have to produce useful information--I work with about a dozen
each year. My main interest is in helping them develop processes to
compare what they actually do with what they say they do--the two
seldom match very well. This takes me to personal communications,
politics of corporations and how they organize, how technology is used
to avoid inter-personal conflict, and other touchy-feely things. Right
now I'm studying fibre channel networking--the communications dealing
with putting computer storage on a switched network rather than
directly plugging into the computer itself. It isn't as interesting as
music to me, but it pays the bills. I was a avid amateur brewer, and
even a professional brewer for a short time--and I still maintain an
interest in the art and science of brewing ale, in particular.

Sizzling Hot Topics


Simple Comping Rhythms


Unwanted radio through my amp

Solfege Hand Signs

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